Galleries and Museums: Melding Old and New with Glass

These projects use glass and light to connect old and new, inside and outside
Sponsored by Pilkington North America – NSG Group

Learning Objectives:

  1. Discuss two ways the Glenstone Museum avoids direct sunlight on artwork.
  2. List the two materials used for cladding of the Markel Center at Virginia Commonwealth University.
  3. Describe the method used at Magazzino to connect the existing building to the newer structure.
  4. Identify the materials used for the exterior facade of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights.


1 AIA LU/Elective
SAA 1 Hour of Core Learning
This course is approved as a core course
This test is no longer available for credit

This course is part of the Zoos, Museums, and Arts Academy

Below are a set of links to building type studies from Architectural Record, which are in-depth analyses of particular kinds of buildings, with photos, drawings, specifications, detailed descriptions, and design solutions. Click on each link below, read the article then complete the quiz to earn your credit and certificate of completion.

It can often be a challenge for designers to balance old and new, existing designs with modern approaches. With museums, there must often be consideration for historical works and events and their display in a contemporary context. These projects show several approaches taken by architects and designers to meld old and new.

Steven Holl Architects’ Game-Changing New Arts Building for Virginia Commonwealth University
The Markel Center at Virginia Commonwealth University's Institute for Contemporary Art (ICA) in Richmond connects the modern university to the historic surroundings and makes a statement, with two colliding volumes that torque as they rise.
Beth Broome

Magazzino Italian Art by Miguel Quismondo
Old is connected to new at Magazzino gallery, whose existing building was connected to the new concrete structure, which features a high ceiling and a glass-paneled roof, by two fully-glazed corridors.
Alex Klimoski

Center for Civil and Human Rights Opens Its Doors to Atlanta
Designed for LEED Gold certification, the Center is set into a hillside facing Atlanta's Pemberton Place, a pedestrian park.
Gray Chapman

Glenstone Museum by Thomas Phifer and Partners
The Glenstone Museum’s goal was all-natural lighting for this quiet space just 15 miles from downtown Washington, D.C. The museum encourages visitors to lose themselves in an extraordinary melding of landscape, architecture, and art.
Cathleen McGuigan

Center for Civil Rights

Photo © Albert Vecerka/Esto

Center for Civil and Human Rights opens its doors to Atlanta


Pilkington North America – NSG Group The flat glass business of the NSG Group, operating under the Pilkington brand, is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of glass and glazing products for the building and automotive markets, with manufacturing operations in 29 countries on four continents and sales in 130 countries.


Originally published in February 2019